Agricultural specialists in Nogales found an insect not known to exist in the Western Hemisphere during an inspection of an imported commodity at the border, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said.
Polyamia delongi, from the Cicadellidae family, was found by a CBP agricultural inspector at a local port of entry on Dec. 9, the agency said. The live adult specimen was then forwarded to a USDA entomologist, who confirmed the finding on Dec. 11.
“This is the first time this species has been found in the United States,” CBP said in a news release.
The importer was issued an emergency action notification, and following fumigation protocol procedures, the shipment was released into U.S. commerce, the agency said.
“CBP agriculture specialists are highly trained. They do an excellent job in determining the admissibility of agriculture commodities,” said Armando Goncalvez, assistant director of field operations at CBP’s Tucson Field Office. “We have a great working relationship with our USDA partners, and together we protect the nation from a variety of evolving dynamic threats such as invasive pests that could harm the United States’ agriculture resources.”